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The Cycling Murrays: Pedaling Thru Tradition St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Mar 17, 2024

Amid the vibrant hues of green and the festive spirit of the United Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade, a unique spectacle captured the hearts of onlookers in the West Hudson towns of Harrison, East Newark, and Kearny NJ. The Cycling Murrays, a remarkable family hailing from the serene town of Rochester, Vermont, brought an extraordinary array of bicycles to the streets, turning heads and sparking conversations among the festive crowd.

Since 1987, The Cycling Murrays have been a beacon of entertainment and nostalgia, riding through the East Coast and beyond, showcasing their unparalleled skill and passion for cycling in various forms. This family of cyclists, known for their diversity in bicycle types, embarked on a journey over 272 miles from their home to Harrison NJ, a testament to their dedication and love for the art of cycling.

As they rode their Penny-Farthing Big Wheel bicycle down what was at the time of the bicycle’s creation known as North 4th Street was filled with horse-drawn carriages, and now known as North Frank E. Rodgers Blvd, in Harrison, NJ, The Cycling Murrays presented a living timeline of cycling history. Among their collection, the Penny-Farthing bicycle stands out as a highlight but it is the showmanship and precision that makes for an eye-pleasing show in the midst of a parade.

With respect to the Penny-Farthing bicycle with its distinctive large front wheel and smaller rear wheel draws attention but also tells the tale of cycling's evolution. The Penny-Farthing, named for its resemblance to the British penny and farthing coins, was a symbol of the late Victorian era, dominating the bicycle scene in the 1870s and 1880s. Invented by James Starley, the "Father of the Bicycle Industry," this design marked a significant step in bicycle history, despite its challenges in safety and ease of use.

The presence of The Cycling Murrays at the parade was not just an exhibition of cycling skills but a bridge connecting the past with the present. The sight of the Penny-Farthing, among other unique bicycles, rolling down the street offered a glimpse into the rich history of cycling, inviting onlookers to appreciate the journey from the rudimentary designs of yesteryears to the sophisticated bikes of today.

The journey of The Cycling Murrays from Rochester, Vermont, to Harrison, NJ, is a compelling story of passion, dedication, and the enduring appeal of cycling. Their performance at the United Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade is a reminder of the joy and unity that shared traditions and interests can bring to a community. As they continue to pedal through the East Coast, The Cycling Murrays not only keep the legacy of cycling alive but also inspire future generations to explore the endless possibilities on two wheels.

In a world where technology and speed often take precedence, The Cycling Murrays stand as a vivid reminder of the beauty in slowing down, embracing history, and celebrating the simple joy of riding a bicycle. Their performance in Harrison, NJ, will undoubtedly remain a cherished memory for those who witnessed it, a testament to the enduring charm of cycling and the unbreakable bonds of family.

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